We are in the middle of an economic slowdown, unemployment is high, public services are crying out for additional funds and the islands are facing a massive drop in tourism. Also, at the same time the Balearic Government is asking tourists to pay a one euro-a-day tourist tax. Taking all this into account yesterday the Council of Majorca led by Maria Antonia Munar, one of the five key figures of the coalition local government, announced that the Council had set-up a free hotline so that people could vote for a Majorcan who is taking part in the Spanish equivalent of Pop Idols, Operacion Triunfo. Calls are charged at 1.62 euros and the cost will be covered by the Council. If the Majorcan contestant wins, she will go on to represent Spain at the Eurovision Song Contest. Munar said yesterday that Chenoa (the Majorcan contestant) was a good example to Majorcan youth while the opposition said that it was a complete waste of public funds. I agree. I understand that if Chenoa does win it will be great publicity for Majorca but public funds should not be used to further increase the already large profits made by the Phone Company and I am also opposed to public institutions being directly involved in a TV talent show especially when they are using public funds. There are many worthy causes in Majorca at the moment which are crying out for money, money which will be used to benefit Majorca and its people. I sincerely hope that Chenoa goes on and wins as I hope that Real Mallorca football club will beat Barcelona this weekend but public money should not be used on such a venture. Moral support is one thing Council funding is something very different.